Monthly Archives: March 2013

Hunt for Sp'egg'tacular Eggs at Ireland House Museum | Adventure #21

There was a time when Burlington was famous for farming. Our fertile soil and moderate temperatures allowed early farmers to prosper so much so that, in the early twentieth century, the area was declared the Garden of Canada.

Today, there are few signs of farm life left in Burlington south of Dundas Street. But thanks to the City’s forward thinking back in 1987, Ireland House at Oakridge Farm remains as a living history museum telling the story of Burlington’s early settlers.

The Museum hosts a number of special events during the year, with one of the most anticipated ones being their Sp’egg’tacular Easter Event.

Our day started with a tour of Ireland House and an introduction to the members of the Ireland family. It is remarkable that this home was occupied by a single family for almost 150 years.

Another thing that makes Ireland House so unique is that it is furnished largely of antiques original to the home, passed down through generations. Each room is arranged to show a different era — a parlour from the first generation, a sitting room from the second generation, and a bedroom from the third generation.

There are two kitchens in this house! Down in the basement kitchen, interpreters were busy baking hot cross buns from scratch. It was the wonderful smell of this wood burning fireplace that greeted us as we parked our car upon arrival.

Around the corner, eggs were being coloured in the Victorian tradition daily dose cialis through the use of natural dyes produced by boiling common foods.

Blue eggs … red cabbage
Jade green eggs … red onion us online pharmacy cialis skins
Orange eggs … yellow onion skins
Rich yellow eggs … carrot tops
Dark pink eggs … beets

Across the grounds, Oakridge Interpretive Centre was host to a Kids Prize Bazaar and a silent auction.

Of course, the highlight of the day and the main draw for many families was the classic Easter Egg Hunt. There were two age divisions with the 1-5 year olds going first, followed by those 6 and older.

Eggs were scattered about the grounds and kids had a blast collecting as many as they could find in their baskets. After the thrill of the hunt, the colourful plastic eggs were exchanged for a small goodie bag of treats. If a child found one of the special golden eggs, they received a bonus surprise.

Every child also had the opportunity to meet and greet with the Easter Bunny!

Other Easter Celebration is there generic viagra activities included face painting, fair-style games, a clue hunt and treasure dig, jelly bean guess, kids’s crafts, and card making. There was also a BBQ and bake sale alongside a variety of vendors, crafters and artisans. This event had so much going on that I don’t think any one family could have done it all.

On our way out, we came across a heritage Blacksmith demonstration featuring a volunteer showcasing traditional methods of ironwork.

Special thanks to the Rocca Sisters team for partnering with the Museums of Burlington to present this event. Their support allowed for free admission where to buy viagra online yahoo answers this year.

For more information about the Museums of Burlington including hours, admission prices and details of special events, visit their website and Facebook page.

Next up at Ireland House is a Mother’s Day Tea and Springtime Celebration featuring live musical entertainment, special guests and re-enactors. With historic cooking, gardening demonstrations and the promise of a canadian pharmacy exams dr fatima marankan surprise host, this sounds like an event not to be missed.

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Have a Farmyard 'n Fish Fry Good Friday | Adventure #20

Just in time for the Easter long weekend, Mother Nature finally gave us a glimpse of Spring so we sprung over to Springridge Farm to take part in their Easter Festival.

What was once a farm for sour cherries is today an “agritourism” farm providing Halton families a way of rediscovering our agricultural heritage and having a ton of fun in the process.

The farm re-opens each year just in time for the Easter long-weekend and kicks off the season with a three-day Easter Festival. There’s always plenty to do in their “Fun Farmyard,” but when they have a special event like this, the place really gets hopping!

As soon as we arrived, not surprisingly, the boys made a bee-line for the Easter Egg Hunt. Greeting us at the entrance were a bevy of bunnies smiling from ear to ear.

Springridge has really mastered the art of the traditional egg hunt. The continuous format means more fun for the kids and less waiting for the parents. Each child is given an empty basket and is encouraged to search the indoor hayloft for colourful plastic eggs. When the basket is full, it is exchanged for a sweet Easter treat.

Our family really got a kick out of the farm’s newest attraction: The Springridge Singing Chickens! This show features a rooster and six audio-animatronic chickens singing classic farmyard songs interspersed with lots of corny humour. In-between each show (performed every half hour), kids can come by and press the “Poke for a Joke” button to enjoy an ongoing stream of chicken chestnuts.

We also enjoyed their professional puppet presentation, “Peter Rabbit’s Eggcellent Easter Show.”

Springridge Farm is in a gorgeous location on the southern side of the Niagara Escarpment. We boarded a wagon ride “show and tell” around the farm that provided fantastic views overlooking the region with Toronto’s C.N. Tower visible off in the distance. A short hike out to a raised lookout provides another opportunity to gaze out over the land.

Pony rides are always a hit and these are a reasonable $3 — how could we say no?

To close out our visit, we saw the bunnies in Bunnyville with their farmyard friends, slid down the pipe slide, played in what must be the “world’s largest sandbox”, and ran through corn trails. We’ll capture all of this fun is photos when we’re back at Springridge for their Harvest Festival in the fall.

Later in the day, we continued our Good Friday adventure with a traditional meal of Fish ‘n Chips.

Earlier in the week I posed the question to Mr Burlington Facebook fans: “Who has the best Fish ‘n Chips in Burlington?” Many readers responded with the same answer: The Black Bull British Pub. I’ve driven by this location on Guelph Line (across the street from Home Depot) many times but have never stopped in to check it out. Tonight was the night!

The Black Bull really does do a great job of re-creating the traditional British Pub, seemingly found on every U.K. street corner. A large portion of the menu is dedicated to “Traditional British Fare” including favourites like Bangers and Mash, Liver and Onions, Meat and Potato Pie, Steak and Guiness Pie, Sheperd’s Pie and, of course, Fish ‘n Chips.

Here’s a photo of me pretending that I don’t know what I want yet — like I’m not going to go for the Fish ‘n Chips!

When we walked in the door, we received a very enthusiastic welcome from Carolyn — it turns out she was the first person to recommend The Black Bull on my Facebook page. Carolyn wasn’t our server for the meal but she made sure that she was the one to deliver our fish so that she could appear in my blog… thanks Carolyn!

The fish is a huge piece of premium haddock, hand dipped in their house-made beer batter and fried to a golden brown. Served with hand-cut Yukon gold fries, house-made tarter sauce and coleslaw — we all agreed this seemed the perfect way to cap off a fun, family Good Friday.

The Black Bull is popular with families because of their famous $5.99 kids menu. Jr Burlington received a large portion of Fish ‘n Chips plus a drink and ice cream, a fantastic bargain.

Of course, there’s live music too! Annette Haas provided background accompaniment and really helped to set the mood.

If you’re interested in following our adventures, the Springridge Farm Easter Festival continues Saturday and Sunday of Easter weekend with their fun farmyard attractions continuing daily from 9am to 5pm. The Black Bull serves their famous Fish ‘n Chips every day of the year.

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Take a Trip on the Burlington Chocolate Trail | Adventure #19

With the arrival of Spring, many of us look forward to the Easter Bunny bringing baskets brimming with chocolate.

But you don’t have to wait for Easter to arrive. Year-round, Burlington is home to many chocolatiers and chocolate shops ranging from tiny boutiques making unique sweets, to larger-scale facilities that ship treats across the country.

Last year, Burlington Tourism decided to celebrate the city’s chocolate purveyors by launching the Burlington Chocolate Trail. This self-guided city tour is described as “the perfect outlet for the chocoholic in you.” For 2013, there are 13 stops on the trail — many providing samples. You can indulge in a wide variety of chocolate delights, artisan food and even chocolate spa treatments.

We started our trek on the trail by visiting Burlington’s oldest chocolate shop, Walker’s Chocolates, which is celebrating 30 years in business. We had recently enjoyed the Walker’s Chocolates Factory Tour as Adventure #18. This time, we visited their flagship store on Fairview Street where we picked up a copy of the Chocolate Trail map and received a sample of their Flavour of the Month — what a great start!

Our next stop was just doors away in the same plaza. Mrs B’s Gifthouse is a local legend — but one I admittedly did not know about until I walked in the door. By the time I walked out the door, owner Angelo Bentivegna and his wife “Mrs. B” felt like old friends! In business for 24 years, the Bentivegna family have become famous for three things: gorgeous gift basket presentations, amazing biscottis baked in-house, and a deep-rooted support of community. They firmly believe that their longtime success is thanks to Burlington residents so they try to give back to Burlington every way they can.

In addition to their chocolate dipped biscotti, other chocolate items at Mrs. B’s Gifthouse include a variety of chocolate barks, unique chocolate bars, coconut cookie macaroons, soft chocolate licorice, and more.

The family prides themselves on the principles of providing customers with service, selection and a unique shopping experience backed by a quality and satisfaction guarantee — they know their reputation depends on it!

I’ll let Angelo himself tell you more about Mrs. B’s Gifthouse in this video.

We zigzagged across the city in anticipation of what was waiting for us at Christy’s Gourmet Gifts. Participants on the Burlington Chocolate Trail get to sample their signature product, Christy’s Crunch. I’ve had the pleasure of trying this treat before — an incredible combination of Belgian milk chocolate combined with almonds, pure butter toffee and a light cookie crunch. Word-of-mouth about Christy’s

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Besides their Chocolate Crunch, Christy’s offers many other types of confections, gourmet sweets, and handmade cookies. Master chocolatier, Bernie Mueller, boasts that all of their products are created from family recipes using the finest Belgian chocolate and pure butter. Another specialty of Christy’s is beautifully packaged corporate and client gifts.

In Downtown Burlington, we visited Sweetness Bakery on Brant Street, home to a huge variety of cupcakes and other pastries. This shop was so busy with customers in search of sweets that we settled on taking a photo outside in front of their sign.

If you want your mouth to water, take a look at their shrine to cupcake goodness. In the chocolate department, they have eight cupcake varieties in rotation: Classic Chocolate, Vanilla Chocolate, Chocolate Mint, Chocolate Caramel, Chocolate Sundae, Chocolate Truffle, Triple Chocolate and, perhaps the ultimate… Brownie Explosion.

We couldn’t possibly hit every stop on the trail in one day, so we finished off this leg of the tour in Aldershot at Turtledoves Bakery. Their claim to fame is producing some of the tastiest gluten-free baked goods around.

Turtledoves Bakery has established themselves as both a destination bakery for people with celiac disease (and others who require a gluten-free diet) as well as a local neighbourhood bakery. They make everything from breads, cakes and cheesecakes to cookies, muffins, pies, tarts, and squares in a dedicated gluten-free facility.

The Burlington Chocolate Trail website is smart phone enabled which allowed us to check

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out upcoming stops on the go!

Also, remember to ask one of the participating businesses for the secret chocolate code word. This allows you come back to the website to enter to win a “Chocolate Delights” gift basket.

If you hit the Chocolate Trail, let us know in the comments section below. We’d love to hear if we helped you discover a new Burlington gem or if you were able to visit one of the locations we missed.

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Hop On Down to the Walker's Chocolates Factory Tour | Adventure #18

Thirty years ago, Harry Walker made his dream of owning his own chocolate business cialis for pulmonary hypertension come true. In 1983, he opened up a shop in Burlington and success quickly followed.

To thank the community for their long lasting support, every other year, Walker’s Chocolates hosts an Open House at their Candy Kitchen in the weeks leading up to Easter.

When we arrived to their Plains Road production facility, we were met by the Easter Bunny as we pulled into the parking lot!

The Easter Bunny was accepting canned food donations for the Salvation Army in exchange for admission to the cialis hong kong factory tour.

This poster, from the 2011 Walker’s Chocolates event, previews the fun to be had.

Walker’s Chocolates remains a true family-run business having now entered its second generation with the addition of daughter, Jennifer, and son, David.

Our tour was led by Harry’s wife Anne. She took us to five different stations to learn about every step of the chocolate making process.

Here is a video overview of our adventure.

The first stop was a chocolate classroom where Anne pointed out the areas near the equator where chocolate is found. Using a number of visual aides, she showed us what the cocoa bean looks like and walked us through how cocoa is harvested and prepared.

Our next stop was to see how chocolate molds are filled. Jr Burlington was selected to pour chocolate into a mold using a foot operated pump.

We learned that over 300 lbs of chocolate a day are used to make molded bunnies! Walker’s Chocolates is smart enough to know that Bunny Ears are, by far, the most popular rapid heart beat with viagra part of the rabbit. They now sell packages of “Just Ears” and will produce 15,000 ears this year alone!

Next it was over to the finishing and decorating table.

This station is where bunnies receive their colourful eyes and candy decorations.

Over at the copper kettles, we saw where caramel corn, peanut brittle, fudge and truffle centres are prepared. Walker’s Chocolates boasts that they make over 50 different exquisite chocolate, truffle and sugarless centres to “tantalize your taste buds and please your palate.”

As we left this station, we each received a yummy square of smooth, creamy caramel!

Our last stop on the tour was the chocolate enrober. This is where truffles are placed on a conveyer belt and covered with a chocolate coating. A unique marking is made on each type of truffle to indicate the flavour.

When we came over the counter viagra alternative at walmart by, they were preparing their trademark Mint Meltaways which have become local favourites for thousands of chocolate connoisseurs for over 30 years.

As I watched this process, I smiled to myself thinking back to the famous I Love Lucy episode where Lucy and Ethel wrap chocolates coming off a conveyer belt.

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On our way out, we were each provided with a Mint Meltaway to try! There was also a draw for a giant chocolate Easter viagra prescription or over the counter Bunny and an opportunity to shop in the small store that fronts their factory location.

Later in the day we would visit their flagship store on Fairview Street to kick off our trek on the Burlington Chocolate Trail. But that’s an adventure for another day!

Which part of the chocolate Easter Bunny do you eat first? Let me know in the comments section below.

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Step Out to the Burlington Performing Arts Centre | Adventure #17

Growing up in small town Southern Ontario (before cialis and alcohol safe arriving in Burlington), an annual treat for my family was the amateur musical society’s big Broadway show. One year it was South Pacific, another year Annie Get Your Gun, and the next year Guys n’ Dolls. In these shows, cialis and tamsulosin the lead actor might be a dentist or teacher by day but

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transform into a hometown musical superstar at night. And home to these big spirited but small budgeted productions was the high school auditorium.

These memories come to mind each time I step foot in our gorgeous new Burlington Performing Arts Centre. This venue is spectacular and the shows it hosts are diverse and electrifying. From big name musical artists to homegrown bands; from lavish, choreographed spectacles to one-woman shows — The Burlington Performing Arts Centre has it all.

With Jr Burlington being six now, canadian pharmacy largo fl we thought it was time to introduce him to the theatre. Thankfully, the Centre had lined up some unique, family-friendly entertainment for March Break.

Scrap Arts Music caught my attention because it was all about playing whimsical, invented instruments made from recycled scrap. Like many kids these days, he’s all about being a friend to the environment!

We decided to kick-off the industrial recycling theme with a pre-show dinner at The WORKS Gourmet Burger Bistro viagra originale online in Downtown Burlington. This restaurant is famous for its huge variety of inspired burgers served in an urban atmosphere of distressed bricks and boiler room detailing with roadside knickknacks tacked to the walls throughout.

When I was a kid, the coolest restaurants would serve their drinks in mason jars. You know that The WORKS is some place special because they’ve upped the ante by serving their drinks in large measuring cups! And their salt buy viagra with paypal and pepper shakers look like they were formerly light bulbs.

With 68 tried-and-true gourmet burgers to choose from (and seven different patty options) making a decision on what to order here can take a while. I was feeling pretty hungry, so generic viagra review when I saw an option simply called “Gluttony,” I knew that’s what I was in the mood for. This greatest hits compilation features sautéed mushrooms, chipotle mayo, gouda cheese & three big, crunchy onion rings.

In case you haven’t noticed, I’m a pretty big Burlington booster, so I was pretty stoked when I noticed that many of the burgers are named generic viagra by pfizer in honour of our fair city. There’s the Taste of Burgerton, the Brant Street Burger and the R-Brie-G (get it?!). Maybe I can dream of a Mr Burlington Burger some day!

Shortly after we arrived at the Burlington Performing Arts Centre, I was surprised to hear, “Hey, are you Mr Burlington?” It was then that I met the face behind a name I had seen many

times on my page, Sean Hollingsworth. I always love meeting people who know me from Facebook and my blog! Sean and his wife are big supporters of the Centre and were volunteering their time as ushers.

The seats in the Centre are nicely sloped providing good views for shorter people. This is one of those theatres where they say “every seat is a good seat” and it seems to be true! There are booster seats for kids too.

The Scrap Arts Music show was truly spectacular. The group’s mobile “invented” instruments and “power-percussion” choreography kept even my wiggly six-year old spellbound right through the encore number.

A nice touch was that the performers came out almost immediately after the show to sign autographs and take photos.

We got to meet up with the lone female member of the group, Christa Mercey. I learned that Christa is originally from Elmira but now travels the world with this Vancouver-based show.

Later in the week, we were lucky enough to see a second family show at the Burlington Performing Arts Centre. This time, we were accompanied by my brother and my niece.

Jamie Adkins: Circus Incognitus had the entire audience laughing from the moment it started to the very end. Billed as an “unforgettable one-man circus comedy,” Jamie Adkins was a clown, an acrobat, a juggler and a tightrope walker all in one. He seemed to fail every step of the way in an endearing act that won over the audience and warmed our hearts.

When Jamie had audience members at the back of the theatre (and in the balcony) launch citrus fruit onto the stage so that he could pierce it with a mouth-held spear, I knew this was unlike anything I had ever seen before or would likely ever see again in the theatre.

As with Scrap Arts Music before it, Jamie Adkins was kind enough to make his way out to the lobby after the show to greet his young fans. Bravo.

Have you seen any shows at the Burlington Performing Arts Centre yet? Let me know what acts you’ve enjoyed in the comments form below.

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Go Green on a St. Patrick's Day Pub Crawl | Adventure #16

“Anyone know of any St. Patrick’s Day fun in Burlington this weekend?”

When I asked this question on Facebook, most of the answers seemed centered on bars and beer. As a dad with a young family, my first thought was, “that leaves us out.” But then I thought again. With shamrocks, leprechauns, lucky charms and all hues of green clothing, how could we not try to make St. Patrick’s Day one of our Burlington adventures?

And am I ever glad we did. Turns out there were lots of other families celebrating the day and plenty of ways to enjoy Irish cheer apart from the beer.

We decided to make Downtown Burlington the hub of our adventure. As we drove down Brant cheap viagra 100mg online Street, we spotted a sky high leprechaun greeting passersby in front of the Rude Native. We just had to stop for a photo! What a great start to the day.

The first “pub” on our family-friendly crawl was local legend, Emma’s Back Porch. Emma’s is one of a few St. Patrick’s Day parties that expressly welcomes families to join the fun during the day. We had stopped by the dollar store ahead of time to stock up on green gear so that Jr Burlington cialis is safer than viagra and his Milton friend could arrive dressed appropriately.

As soon as we entered, we were welcomed by a clan of Emma’s staff sporting big smiles and dressed in their St. Patrick’s Day best.

Looking around the restaurant, I noticed a few other spirited families and stopped to ask them for a photo to include in my blog. When I introduced myself as “Mr Burlington” both families I approached knew who I was and said they followed my Facebook page. The power of social media proves itself again!

What is St. Patrick’s Day without green beer? I know this entirely non-Irish tradition makes many people cringe, but I say “Bah Humbug” to that. To me it just adds to the festive fun!

To celebrate the day, Emma’s offered a number of traditional Irish menu items including Guinness Lamb Stew, Fish & Chips and Corned Beef & Cabbage.

As I prepared for the day, I investigated what was happening around town and found that many places advertised Irish Dancing. I later discovered that Burlington’s Woodgate Shamrock Academy of Irish Dance smartly uses the day as a fundraising effort.

Every St. Patrick’s Day, the Woodgate Shamrock dancers spread out across the region performing at as many venues as possible in support of their trip to the World Championships. This year, nine World Qualifying dancers will travel to Boston at the end of March to compete in the biggest event of the year. These dancers train for about two hours, 4-5 times a week.

For St. Patrick’s Day 2013, the school danced at over 20 area establishments — 13 in Burlington. I had created this chart beforehand to help get the word out about their performances through social media.

After we had finished our meal and watched the dancing at Emma’s, we departed in search of the next pub on our crawl.

We ended up back at the Rude Native, home of the stilt-walking Leprechaun we had met earlier. (When asked about this paradox, he suggested we imagine just how big his pot of gold must be!)

The Rude Native was offering a lot of treats to it’s patrons including $2 stacks of cialis 20 green shamrock pancakes along with an extensive toppings bar. Jennifer, the manager (in the green wig), came by to chat and her enthusiasm is infectious. It’s easy to see that she loves her job!

I was happy to find Malarie offering free Carlsberg samples!

With two venues under our belts, we capped off our kid-friendly crawl by peeking inside the Queenshead. They were packed to the rafters in there so we took that as a sign to head for home.

How do you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? Do you get decked out in green with all stop spam emails canadian pharmacy the trimmings or are you happy to watch the rest of the world shake their shamrocks? Let me know in the comments section below.

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March Into Maple Syrup Month | Adventure #15

It’s syrup season again! Every year, come March, cold winter nights blend with sunny spring days creating the perfect conditions for making maple syrup.

For generations, Canadian kids have made the trek into the sugar bush for a taste of nature’s sweet nectar. Continuing this tradition, Bronte Creek Provincial Park hosts its annual Maple Syrup Festival every weekend in March plus all of March Break week. The festival teaches how syrup has been

made through the centuries and provides a number of opportunities to sample it different ways.

Our first stop on this adventure was the Welcome Centre that serves as the central hub for the festival. From here tours depart down Maple Lane, wagon rides head out for the Pancake House and costumed interpreters help bring a Maple Museum to life.

With our Festival Passport and Map in hand, we enjoyed a guided tour by very knowledgeable volunteer Alex. She showed us how to tap a tree and how syrup production has changed.

Alex took the time to answer all the questions had by ever-curious Jr Burlington. She made sure we understood how to tell maple trees apart from other trees and demonstrated different ways syrup has been made as we visited living exhibits all down the lane.

We soon approached Spruce Lane Farm which was home to the Breckon family from 1899 to the 1950s. Alex pointed out one of the big maple trees that the Breckons’ themselves had tapped for sap every winter.

Having escorted us to the farm, Alex left to lead another group and encouraged us to discover more on our own. Our first stop was the Candy Shanty where we watched fresh maple sugar being made and molded into a familiar maple leaf shape.

Outside the shanty, we came across Victorian era boys enjoying traditional games and teaching tech-savvy kids how their counterparts of yesteryear played without screens in hand.

A bit farther down the way we came across fresh Maple Taffy — always a festival favourite!

Boy, is it ever sweet and sticky!

We met the farm animals, browsed the maple gift shoppe and toured the farmhouse. All along the way Jr Burlington enjoyed finding the secret code locations needed to complete his Maple Passport. Whenever we found a bright yellow sign, we answered the question and recorded a letter to decipher a secret word.

Upon returning to the Welcome Centre, the completed passport was traded for an Official Park Ranger Card!

Next we were transported by tractor to the Pancake House where we feasted on pancakes,

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bacon and sausage all smothered with a generous dose of maple syrup!

In addition to all the Maple Syrup activities, Bronte Creek offers an abundance of trails and a fantastic Children’s Farm and Playbarn to enjoy. Admission to Bronte Creek Provincial Park is $16 for a daily vehicle permit.

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Paint and Play Together at Crock A Doodle | Adventure #14

Have you ever tried to find something fun to do, out-of-the-house, on a weeknight in the winter? Besides shopping, swimming or perhaps visiting the library, there just aren’t a lot of options for weeknight family fun.

Enter Crock A Doodle. This hidden gem in Burlington provides a rare opportunity for anyone, of any age and ability, to have a blast expressing their artistic side.

As their website explains, Crock A Doodle is “a special place to gather with family and friends to create, laugh, share and grow.” And it’s true! As fun as the final creations may be, like so many things in life, the magic of Crock A Doodle lay in the journey.

Crock A Doodle is all about enjoying some creative time together while transforming ready-to-paint pottery pieces into amazing works of art. From plates and mugs to home decor accents and crazy creatures, this is not fine art I’m talking about, it’s “fun art!”

An adventure at Crock A Doodle can start any time. When you’re ready, just drop-in to the bright and cheerful studio at Walkers Line and Dundas Street, no reservation is required.

You start your art by standing in front of shelves upon shelves of blank pottery projects ready to be brought to life. Looking at all the options, I felt like somewhere in between a kid-in-a-candy-store and a bull-in-a-china-shop!

Ranging in price from $10-30, parents and kids can each create their own piece or work together to design a fabulous family project. For example, everyone can grab a brush and paint a cookie jar, popcorn bowl or serving platter that will be treasured as one-of-a-kind art for years to come. The price of any piece is marked on the bottom and is all inclusive of studio time, paints & kiln-firing.

We let Jr Burlington choose a project he liked that we could all collaborate on. His first choice was a giant monster truck, but he later settled on painting a fighter jet instead.

The staff at Crock A Doodle couldn’t have been nicer or made us feel more welcome. Owner Angie obviously loves her second career as a small business owner and has a passion for helping others enjoy a memorable creative experience.

Once a decision was made on the project, we got to pick a palette of paint colours to work with. Soon both the paint and creative juices were flowing as we doodled away!

On the Thursday night we were there, the studio was bustling with other families who also knew the secret to having a fun mid-week, after-dinner adventure.

Whatever you do, don’t make the mistake I did by exclaiming “I’m not much of an artist.” Apparently, they hear this a lot at Crock A Doodle. It’s not about trying to become a master artist, I was told, it’s simply about discovering the joy of personal expression.

Crock A Doodle likes to say that they put the ART in party! They specialize in hosting creative kids birthday parties, ladies nights and corporate events. Each month they feature a full calendar of classes, events and specially themed fun nights.

As we finished our masterpiece, Angie suggested we add a special touch by turning painted finger prints into cockpit co-pilots!

A few days later, we dropped back in to Crock A Doodle to pickup our project. It’s amazing the difference that the glazing and kiln-firing makes. What were seemingly soft pastels had popped into glossy, vibrant colours to create a brilliant work of art that is now proudly displayed on one 6-year old’s bedside table.

With March Break soon upon us, special sessions are offered each day from 10:30am-noon. These classes are for kids five and older and are priced at $25 each (including project & supervision). Pre-registration is required by calling 905-336-6366.

  • Mon March 1th – Sesame Street
  • Tues March 12th – Pop Art
  • Wed March 13th – HOOT Day
  • Thurs March 14th – 3D Art (Ages 10+)
  • Fri March 15th – EGG-stravaganza!

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Warm Up Your Winter at Burlington's Indoor Market | Adventure #13

What does a greenhouse do in the middle of a cold, white winter? Most simply close their doors until spring. But this year, TERRA Greenhouses in Burlington decided to try something different and hit a home run with the TERRA at Home Winter Market.

Their success was evident as soon as I pulled into a parking lot teeming with cars. As we walked towards the entrance, two food trucks served lineups of hungry market goers (including everyone’s favourite, Gorilla Cheese).

Terra at Home Winter Market

The Winter Market is heated — and entirely glass-enclosed — making an ideal respite from the cold weather. Each week, an impressive variety of over twenty local businesses and farms come together creating a bright and fun atmosphere surrounded by tropical plants.

The market promotes baked goods, produce and meats from neighbouring farms and also hosts a number of unique artisans. By supporting local businesses and farms, TERRA hopes to increase healthy lifestyles by providing the community with a necessary connection to local food producers over the winter months.

In this video, we meet just a few of the many vendors and get to know what makes each of them unique.

The Winter Market also provides social opportunities for people to connect with neighbours and friends outside of home.

The vendors on the day we visited included:

  • Dyment Farm – Homemade pies and sweets fresh from the farm.
  • Smokeville (from Oakville) – The best smoked stuff you will ever eat!
  • Perfectly Natural – Products made with fair-trade, responsibly harvested and renewable ingredients.
  • The Little Truffle Maker – Delicious homemade truffles containing only 3 ingredients: Semi Sweet Chocolate, Cream and Real Liqueur.
  • Terra Teas – The finest premium luxury Loose Leaf Teas grown on Mother Earth.
  • Cherry Lane – Providing tart cherries, tart cherry juice concentrate, and a variety of other fruit products for over 100 years.
  • Manual Labour Coffee – Serving the best quality coffee sourced from around the globe and roasted locally.
  • Sweet Potato Johnny – Johnny’s specialty is sweet potato veggie burgers as well as many other sweet potato creations.
  • Itty Bitty Pie Company – Offering six different flavours of sweet mini-pies each week plus frozen savoury pies too!
  • Purple Daze Lavender – Quality Ontario lavender for every occasion.
  • Crafty Owl – Heart + soul + sweat + tears = handmade. for you, by craftyowl.
  • Lauray Farms – Offering a wide variety of home grown fruit and vegetables, as well as honey, preserves, meat and eggs.
  • Kettle Corn Boss – Kettle corn made in small batches, using only the finest quality ingredients…with no preservatives.
  • Pies n’ Such – All types of homemade pies (and other baked goods too) for events, dinner parties or family meals.
  • Cupcakes of Westdale – Cupcakes baked in small batches daily to ensure quality and freshness — using only the finest ingredients.
  • Wandering Locavore – Bringing gourmet food to you, specializing in Ontario Artisan Cheese, Extra Virgin Olive Oil and products made with olive oil.
  • Epicure Selections – Committed to doing good by providing great food and by giving back to Canadians and their communities.
  • Tasty Cups Café – Cupcakes made with loving care including options that are gluten friendly, nut friendly, vegan friendly or any combination.
  • Lovin Oven Bakery – Featuring a wide variety of baked goods including custard slices, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and swiss rolls.
  • Ann Brown – Fresh local produce

The Winter Market runs only until March 23. After that, you’ll need to wait until the Farmer’s Market at the Burlington Mall resumes in May for your farm fresh favourites.

You can find TERRA on the North side of Dundas Street (Hwy #5) between Guelph Line & Brant Street. Here’s a map: http://goo.gl/maps/8Q4bt

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